Category Archives: Published Articles

A Hopeful Beginning

humanitylogo-242x300A recent blog I wrote for The Humanity Project

(Editor’s Note: Mandi Hawke is Program Coordinator of Youth Services at SunServe, an agency committed to improving life for the LGBT community in South Florida. She also is the author of “PROUD: emPOWERment for LGBTQA Youth.” Ms. Hawke wrote this blog especially for the Humanity Project.)

By Mandi Hawke

As you know, there has been a great deal of discussion about 2012 being the end of time. We’ve all heard about the Mayan calendar ending, seen the Hollywood blockbuster movies or perhaps overheard the evening newscasters sharing some fear-based theories. It feels very similar to the Y2K insanity, remember that? The fear bug is so dangerous and contagious that it spreads like wildfire, but you don’t have to accept it into your consciousness. Along with many spiritual folks and light seekers, I believe that 2012 represents the tipping point of a global consciousness shift. Not to say that we’re going to have a sudden complete change in human behavior overnight, but that it’s coming.

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Tying it Together

photo-on-12-2-12-at-11-57-am-2 Thank you South Florida Gay News (SFGN) for the wonderful 2 page article: chronicling my childhood up until my current work at SunServe, Drag it OUT and the release of my newest book PROUD emPOWERment for LGBTQA Youth. If you have not read the SFGN article yet check it out here.

This is the first time I have openly talked to press about my upbringing, feelings of suicide, bullying and the internal conflict I went through in my teenage years. The entire process has really been so personally powerful, in a two fold way. In some ways it was healing to talk openly, get it out there and share it with the world in a big way. On the other hand it was really scary and has  brought it all back up again for me to look at.

The last few days I have been going through a lot of deep emotional feelings, waves of sadness, frustration, anger and depression. I find I’ve been rough on myself; judging myself for not being strong enough. I feel my purpose here is to inspire others to overcome these feelings and here I am stuck inside them again myself. As I’ve been going through this, I have not written anything for the blog, worked on promoting my book or anything else. I have been taking each day as it comes and really asking the universe to show me what i need to learn here. Then it hit me….

I subscribe to The Daily Love and a few other personal growth blogs… today the email from The Daily Love really hit hard and woke something up inside me.

Todays blog is called If you want to be seen – SHOW yourself! :o) in the article Mastin talks about experiencing great sadness recently, and not understanding the reasons behind it. Through quiet introspection he realized his sadness was feelings coming up from the past, feelings of being invisible, unseen and unheard. Some of the memories where he was most sad had to do with a time in his life when things were really rough, drug use etc. He was hoping inside that his parents would know he was in trouble and come to help him, but he never told them about what was going on, never shared his pain. So all while he was suffering in silence, internally screaming for help. Right now, something in his life triggered these feelings to resurface and he had to deal with them again.

How often do we do this? Suffer silently, wishing someone would come to our rescue.

I realized after reading his blog, and reflecting on the childhood stories I shared with SFGN – all through high school and even into college I suffered. I had deep pain, internal confusion, self-hate and feelings of abandonment…but I talked to nobody about it. I shared with nobody what I was going through, and I was so hurt when nobody came to my rescue. For awhile I blamed others, I was angry – because as many of you know, being angry is easier than being sad. When you’re sad, you’re vulnerable…when your angry, you put the walls up and keep people out, which is what we sometimes perceive as a safer option.

Looking back I wish I had reached out, I wish I had looked for an LGBTQ Community Center, a Inclusive Church, a Therapist who was Affirming. I wish I had the courage to be really open and honest with some of my friends and family to ask for help. As Mastin said, nobody can SEE YOU if you don’t SHOW YOURSELF.

Today I challenge you to SHOW YOURSELF, be honest, be open and TALK TO SOMEONE.

To find an LGBTQA Center or Affirming Counselor near you search at GLBT Near Me.

To talk to someone RIGHT NOW Call Trevor Project at 1-866-488-7386

If you want a friend, I’m here for you as well – YOU’RE NEVER ALONE!


Mandi Hawke


Filed under Published Articles, Youth Empowerment